I don’t think we’re getting a lot of mileage out of “Arrested Development” associations anymore. With the exception of Jason Bateman (and Portia de Rossi in the fantastic “Better off Ted”), the projects coming from “AD” alumni haven’t been faring very well. Michael Cera is apparently overexposed; Alia Shawkat has basically just done that Journey video with Ellen Page; Tony Hale has been in everything, but nothing memorable (save for his role in “Chuck”); David Cross has done nothing but embarass himself on screen since “AD”; Jeffrey Tambor had a failed sitcom; and Jessica Walter is on fucking “90210.”
Even Mitch Hurwitz has struck out with “Sit Down, Shut Up,” an animated sitcom that included much of the “AD” cast as voice talent. It’s actually gotten to the point where, if “Arrested Development,” is mentioned, and it’s not actually the long-awaited, perpetually in development hell “AD” movie, then I’m twice as skeptical. The “Arrested Development” tag has been put on more products than the Apatow one, and we have nothing good to show for it.
However, FOX is nevertheless giving Mitch Hurwitz another shot. Hurwitz is teaming up with Will Arnett and “AD’s” other executive producers, Jim Vallely, to bring another new single-camera sitcom to the network. In it, Arnett will play a rich Beverly Hills jackass who falls in love with a charitable tree-hugging woman who can’t stand his lifestyle or values. I assume the tree-hugging woman will be similar to the animated character voiced by Kristin Chenoweth in “Sit Down, Shut Up.”
You could hardly do better than casting Arnett as a rich Beverly Hills jackass, but one has to wonder how long you could carry that conceit. How many ways could he possible hate-pursue her? The good news is, it’s on FOX, so the show will probably only last as long as the premise remains fresh. Which is to say: Three episodes followed by a quick cancellation.